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Queen Elizabeth II has congratulated “all those involved” in BBC’s long-running TV series “Songs of Praise” as it celebrates nearly 3,000 episodes on its 60th anniversary.
“For 60 years, ‘Songs of Praise’ has drawn together congregations and BBC viewers throughout the United Kingdom in collective worship,” the reigning monarch said in a pre-recorded message for a special episode of the show on Sunday, as quoted by The Telegraph.
“During that time, the program has shown Christianity as a living faith not only through hymns and worship songs but also by featuring the many people who have put their faith at the center of their lives,” the 95-year-old shared.
“I congratulate ‘Songs of Praise’ and all those involved in the program on its 60th anniversary,” the queen added.
Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II shared a pre-recorded message honoring BBC’s ‘Songs of Praise.’
(Photo by Ben Stansall – WPA Pool/Getty Images)
The series, which continues to reach more than one million viewers each week, was created by producer Donald Baverstock, Yahoo! Entertainment reported. The first airing occurred in 1961 at Tabernacle Baptist Church in Cardiff. According to the outlet, the airing was an overnight success and reached as many as 12 million people on some Sundays.
The outlet revealed that over the years, there have been 270 presenters on the program. Actress Dame Thora Hird hosted the spin-off show “Praise Be!” for 17 years. Pam Rhodes, the show’s longest-serving presenter, first appeared in 1987 and has presented 386 episodes. Aled Jones, the current host, has been with the show for 21 years. He made his debut as a child in 1988.
Back in 2020, royal historian Robert Lacey told People magazine that Elizabeth’s Christian faith has been essential during her reign.
“She sees it in the bigger context of her religious faith and of a God who holds her family in his hands,” he told the outlet at the time. “It is the solid and simple faith that sustains the queen.”
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